Fer­gu­son

Top tip­ster Paul Fer­gu­son looks at Glo­ri­ous Good­wood and the rest of the ac­tion from the month of Au­gust

Racing Ahead - - CONTENTS -

Paul Fer­gu­son with his picks from Glo­ri­ous Good­wood

HAV­ING sup­ple­mented her New­mar­ket and Ir­ish 1,000 Guineas dou­ble in the Coro­na­tion Stakes at Royal As­cot,WIN­TER is fan­cied to main­tain her win­ning streak in the Qatar Nas­sau Stakes at Glo­ri­ous Good­wood.

Ai­dan O’Brien’s Galileo filly will be step­ping up to be­yond a mile for the first time on the first Satur­day in Au­gust, but her style of rac­ing sug­gests she re­ally ought to rel­ish the ex­tra cou­ple of fur­longs. She was par­tic­u­larly im­pres­sive at As­cot last time and Roly Poly – run­ner-up to her there and at the Cur­ragh in the Ir­ish 1,000 Guineas – franked the form by win­ning the Fal­mouth Stakes at New­mar­ket’s July meet­ing.

The im­prove­ment the grey has shown from April has been one of the highlights of the Flat sea­son thus far and she can com­plete the Group 1 four-timer here.

Look­ing through the en­tries for dan­gers, John Gos­den’s pair of Shut­ter Speed and So Mi Dar stand out. The for­mer looked re­ally good at New­bury and in the Musi­dora at York, while the lat­ter has clearly had is­sues, given she has yet to reap­pear. It would be a tall or­der to win a race of this na­ture first time out.

SUS­SEX STAKES

Win­ter also holds an en­try in the Sus­sex Stakes over a mile ear­lier in the week,but it seems un­likely that she will be asked to take on the colts at this stage and the race is prob­a­bly best left to Godol­phin.

Ribch­ester is their most likely rep­re­sen­ta­tive and, while I re­mained un­con­vinced af­ter his suc­cess in the Lockinge Stakes at New­bury, the fouryear-old won me over with his stylish vic­tory in the Queen Anne.

It seems un­likely that the boys in blue would run both him and Bar­ney Roy, who was a shade un­lucky in the Co­ral-Eclipse, given how keen he had been in the early stages. He saw out the longer trip re­ally well, but clearly still pos­sesses the req­ui­site pace to win at the top level over a mile. I sus­pect Richard Han­non’s three-year-old will wait for the Jud­dmonte In­ter­na­tional at York and, of course, he had Churchill in be­hind when re­vers­ing 2,000 Guineas form in the St James’s Palace Stakes.

Churchill looks set to rep­re­sent Ai­dan O’Brien, but the track at Good­wood seems to suit speed­ier types at this trip and the son of Galileo takes time to wind up in his races.Rather likeWin­ter,his run­ning style hints that he could be even more ef­fec­tive over an ex­tra cou­ple of fur­longs, de­spite also hav­ing com­pleted the New­mar­ket-Ir­ish Guineas dou­ble.

GOOD­WOOD CUP

Ear­lier in the week, As­cot Gold Cup win­ner Big Orange will be pop­u­lar in his bid to land a third straight Good­wood Cup. Clearly at home around this unique course, he would seem cer­tain to run his race, but over this shorter trip and with Ryan Moore sure to ride him hand­ier, I think Or­der Of St Ge­orge can re­verse the form.

Of course, he needs to prove he can han­dle the un­du­lat­ing track, but he shaped well at Na­van ear­lier in the sea­son and I fancy the five-year-old to gain his revenge.

AS­COT AC­TION

It could be a re­ally big week for the Bal­ly­doyle op­er­a­tion and High­land Reel will bid to land a sec­ond suc­ces­sive King Ge­orgeVI And Queen El­iz­a­beth Stakes at As­cot on the Satur­day be­fore Good­wood gets un­der­way.

So far this sea­son,he has won the Coro­na­tion Cup at Ep­som and the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes at Royal As­cot, where he once again demon­strated his tough­ness

and ver­sa­til­ity in terms of dis­tance.Go­ing back up to 1m4f is in his favour and I ex­pect him to con­firm re­cent form with Ulysses who has since won the Co­ralE­clipse.

The most in­ter­est­ing en­trant in the race is Ep­som and Ir­ish Oaks hero­ine En­able, but it seems un­likely – in the im­me­di­ate af­ter­math of her im­pres­sive suc­cess at the Cur­ragh – that she will be al­lowed to take her chance.John Gos­den’s Nathaniel filly is likely to wait for the York­shire Oaks – where she will be very hard to beat – be­fore pos­si­bly be­ing geared up for a trip to France and the ‘Arc’ for which she is now gen­er­ally sec­ond-favourite be­hind Al­man­zor.

UP TO YORK

At the time of writ­ing, we have yet to see Al­man­zor this sea­son and he was re­cently ruled out of the Jud­dmonte In­ter­na­tional at York (23rd). He fin­ished last sea­son on a high,with vic­to­ries in the Ir­ish Cham­pion Stakes and As­cot’s Qipco Cham­pion Stakes, hav­ing ear­lier won the Prix du Jockey Club. Spot­ted re­cently hav­ing a race­course gal­lop at Claire­fontaine, it would have taken a huge ef­fort to win a race such as the In­ter­na­tional on his reap­pear­ance and it could be that he is be­ing lined up for another trip to Leop­ard­stown in Septem­ber, en route to the ‘Arc’.

The Co­ral-Eclipse first and sec­ond head the bet­ting for theYork con­test and I would favour Bar­ney Roy in the hope that he set­tles a lit­tle bet­ter and en­joys a clearer pas­sage up the long home straight at York.

At dou­ble-fig­ure odds, last year’s third Mu­takayyef is prob­a­bly the each-way call in the race, at this stage. As he did last year, Wil­liam Hag­gas’ Sea The Stars sixyear-old won As­cot’s Group 2 Sum­mer Mile en route to the Knavesmire – the one slight con­cern was that he did pull up lame af­ter that race and had to be dis­mounted by Dane O’Neill. Hope­fully it wasn’t any­thing se­ri­ous and he can be aimed atYork.

Talk­ing of each-way value at the Ebor meet­ing,I’m sur­prised that Crys­tal Ocean is as big as 20-1 (with Bet­way and 14s with Paddy Power – only four firms have priced this race up) fol­low­ing his third in the King Ed­ward VII Stakes. He has 1¾-lengths to find with Per­mian, who of course ear­lier beat him here atYork in the Dante and has since run well in the Grand Prix de Paris, where he was a very game sec­ond.

Crys­tal Ocean looked rather in­ex­pe­ri­enced when asked to pick up in the Dante and was ex­pected to rel­ish the longer trip in the As­cot Group 2,where he was heav­ily sup­ported at the head of the mar­ket. Things didn’t go right that day and I felt he was rushed up at the wrong time, sweep­ing wide on the home turn.My im­me­di­ate re­ac­tion af­ter that race was that he could well bid to pro­vide Sir Michael Stoute with an eighth win in the race and that King Ed­ward form looks like work­ing out well, with Ra­heen House win­ning the Bahrain Tro­phy re­cently.

Crys­tal Ocean would meet Per­mian on 3lb bet­ter terms and can re­verse the form; at the prices, he looks worth an in­vest­ment at this stage. Sir Michael Stoute has another pos­si­ble, in the shape of Mi­rage Dancer who would also war­rant re­spect fol­low­ing an en­cour­ag­ing third over an in­ad­e­quate trip in the Hamp­ton Court Stakes.

Ob­vi­ously, Crys­tal Ocean’s task will be much more dif­fi­cult should John Gos­den opt to sad­dle Cracks­man fol­low­ing his third at Ep­som and sec­ond in the Ir­ish Derby. He had ear­lier beaten Per­mian in the In­vestec Derby Trial at Ep­som – when do­ing well to get out of trou­ble – and the long straight at York should be to his lik­ing. He was beaten by a neck last time, stay­ing on strongly and he cer­tainly sets the form stan­dard if tak­ing his chance,but with the race spon­sors of­fer­ing that 20-1, I’m happy to side with Crys­tal Ocean at this stage.

One last colt to touch on, in what could be a fas­ci­nat­ing con­test is De­foe who is

another that ap­pears to have been over­looked in the bet­ting (cur­rently 33-1).

Ad­mit­tedly, Roger Var­ian’s grey has only won hand­i­caps on his last two starts, but he looks on a sharp up­ward curve and is now rated 104 so de­serves a rise in grade. He holds an en­try in the Listed Glas­gow Stakes whilst this month’s mag­a­zine goes to press. Don’t un­der­es­ti­mate him if be­ing al­lowed to take his chance, al­though he could sneak in the 0-105 Mel­rose Stakes if con­nec­tions wish to have a crack at one more valu­able hand­i­cap – the 1m6f trip shouldn’t be an is­sue.

To round things off this month,I thought I would high­light a trio of horses that have caught my eye in re­cent weeks. Firstly, Rigo­letto who has ac­tu­ally im­pressed me on all three starts. Luca Cu­mani’s Zof­fany colt shaped with an abun­dance of prom­ise on his race­course de­but at New­bury, be­fore get­ting off the mark in tak­ing fash­ion atYar­mouth.

He fol­lowed that up with a smooth win on his hand­i­cap de­but at New­mar­ket and a 6lb rise might not be be­yond him. He holds an en­try while this fea­tures goes to press, but should he skip that, take him se­ri­ously wher­ever he turns up next.

Project Blue­book was a smart ju­ve­nile hur­dler last term and re­verted to the Flat with an en­cour­ag­ing sec­ond at Cat­t­er­ick re­cently.Given the lack of sup­port be­hind him,it is likely that the race will bring him on and,given his owner (JP McManus),he could well be bound for Gal­way.If he runs in the Gal­way Hur­dle – no en­tries avail­able at this stage – he might well be hand­i­capped out of things, fol­low­ing his Grade 2 suc­cess at Fairy­house back in April, but he will cer­tainly be in­ter­est­ing when back on the level off his cur­rent mark. John Quinn’s four-year-old looks ahead of the asses­sor on the Flat, hav­ing fin­ished sec­ond off just 80 last time.

Fi­nally,York’s John Smith’s Cup was run at a daw­dle and wouldn’t have suited those held up right out the back,of whichVic­tory Bond was one. Caught wide too – drawn badly – the way the race unfolded re­ally would have helped the chances of Wil­liam Hag­gas’ lightly-raced four-yearold,who trav­elled into the race well in the cir­cum­stances and still man­aged to fin­ish sev­enth. Of­fi­cially rated 102, the Medicean geld­ing is cer­tainly worth fol­low­ing in sim­i­lar valu­able hand­i­caps and it will not be a sur­prise if he were to win one be­fore the sea­son is out.

Shut­ter Speed

Win­ter

Or­der of St Ge­orge

Al­man­zor

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.